Maria Luisa Vega was born to Jesus and Emilia Suarez, in Michoacan, Mexico, in 1930. She was one of four siblings. At the age of three, the family came to the United States seeking a better life. Together, they earned a modest living working the fields picking fruits and vegetables. She grew up in the neighborhood of Logan, a tight-knit Hispanic community that she adored being a part of. It was here where she formed life-long friendships that she cherished endlessly. She attended St. Joseph’s School, and although she struggled to feel accepted amongst her peers, her faith in God helped her persevere. Her tenacity led her to graduate from Santa Ana High School, the first in her family to do so and an incredible accomplishment. At the age of 19, Maria met the love of her life, Rodolfo. After two years of dating, they wed in an intimate ceremony at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church. They began building their family and welcomed Rudy, Michael, and Ernie. When Maria’s parents passed, she took in her younger brother, Dan, and raised him as her own. Their family was finally complete with the addition of Mary, Edward, and Mario. Rising from humble beginnings, Rodolfo and Maria worked tirelessly to create a life to be proud of. They raised their children with God, faith, and family as their foundation. They built a home for all to gather in, a home where laughter and love flourished. In their sixty-seven years of marriage, they made beautiful memories and traditions with their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, traditions her family will uphold in her honor. Maria lived each day in devotion to God. She attended mass daily and dedicated twenty years as a Eucharistic minister. Her husband, Rudy, shared her unwavering faith, and together they organized Spanish masses at St. Joseph’s Church, changed the candles, and distributed monthly missalettes. Maria emulated the belief “God first. Family second.” and passed this value onto her children. As the matriarch of our family, she will be remembered, cherished, and forever in our hearts.